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Taking Sense Away: Confessions of a Former TSA Screener

X86Daddy Re:There is going to be a day when... (354 comments)

Damn right. The TSA was very successful at what it was supposed to be. The TSA was a test, and we failed. Those in the business of spending our tax dollars against us wanted to gauge how far they could go in escalating the attack without response. They got past stealing; they got past harassing nursing mothers; they got past irradiating nude photography, and they got past molestation. They did not see an air travel boycott; they instead saw a favorable (skillfully worded) gallup poll. I'll just yawn and say the people get the government they deserve. I paid attention in school when learning how our major idealogical enemies over the years ran their countries: "papers please" for internal travel, etc... Dropping any sense of patriotism is the only way to not be furious.

about 2 years ago
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Samsung Unveils Windows Phone 8 Device and Android-Based Camera

X86Daddy Re:DSLR (179 comments)

The earlier smartphones, like Nokia's N95, N85, etc... running Symbian S60 had the same advantage of generous physical controls. I replaced my car PCs with such phones, because they allowed as safe, if not safer operation due to excellent eyes-free interfaces (sometimes had to write my own, but the option existed!). Now with the touch-screen brick model, no smartphone really suffices as a car media player, etc... because operating it requires looking at it.

I'm hoping one or more of these manufacturers realize soon that buttons (and knobs and wheels, etc...) were features and come out with something better.

more than 2 years ago
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Large Bitcoin Ponzi Scheme Collapses With a Loss of $5.6 Million

X86Daddy Mod that up! (327 comments)

Damn; my mod points expired yesterday... this is the most concise, insightful thing I've seen comparing the two types of currency.

about 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Use For an Old Smartphone?

X86Daddy I got rid of my clock radio (301 comments)

I went from using a crappy CD player clock radio to using an old rooted Android phone. It's overkill, but benefits include picking whatever MP3 I want whenever I want... including pulling it over the network with ES File Manager, over wifi, from bed... checking weather, ebay, woot, random browsing, etc... The alarm settings, being software-based, are much more flexible and intelligent than most hardware clock radios... I get Monday-Friday how I want, weekends how I want, and one-off alarm changes are no problem. I can change the brightness and color of the time display that shows in screen-saver mode. It's a huge improvement over every hardware bedside clock I'd ever seen. And unlike using my production phone, I can leave this where it sits and keep my production phone in a convenient place for charging and grabbing as I leave home.

With a little effort, you can probably chain apps to do even better... make alarms trigger a Text-to-Speech app that does some RSS headline reading, email subject reading, announcing of the weather, etc...

more than 2 years ago
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Booted From Airplane For Wearing Anti-TSA T-shirt

X86Daddy Re:Love the Shirt! (826 comments)

It was one of the first shirts sold on shirt.woot and the design was by Cory Doctorow. They usually sell popular designs for a while, unlike their usual deal-a-day model, but I think that one is long gone. Maybe with it in the news, they'll bring it back...

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What's the Best Place To Relocate?

X86Daddy Research with Data! (999 comments)

My consort and I went through the "where do we ultimately want to live" question a couple years ago, mostly focused on the US (being from the US meant no paperwork problems). We found a few websites to be awesomely useful:

  • City Data does a lot of statistics on the demographics of major US metro regions. Income, religious mix, crime, education, cost of living, etc... Unfortunately, I think it just covers US and Canada.
  • Google Trends helps you see which cities have people interested in the same topics as you. The best way I found to use this was to search on technical or scene terms from various interests to see which cities show up as top 10 contenders.
  • Most weather sites will show you annual averages on sunshine, rainfall, snow, humidity, hours of light, and temperatures... Also note that some metro regions have emerging structures/behaviors to deal with weather... Some Canadian cities have huge indoor networks and good public transit to help offset snow issues. Pacific Northwest cities are espresso nirvana as a way to cope with dark, cloudy days 3/4 of the year.

Searching this way will probably yield a few candidates who have the mix of demographics you care about, zeitgeist hits, weather you're happy with, etc... Subscribe to RSS feeds of their newspapers, local music scene forums, etc... to get a better feel for each, and ultimately, visit your top candidate(s) for a vacation. We visited our top candidate after all of the above, and we were astounded that it felt perfect on top of being a specification match.

more than 2 years ago
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NSA Official Disputes Chief's Claim That Agency Doesn't Collect American Data

X86Daddy Re:Did they have a file on James Holmes? (214 comments)

TIN FOIL MODE ACTIVATE!

Who benefits from the James Holmes massacre? What agenda gets pushed as a result of that act? How about "more spying on citizens is A-Okay, because it'll help prevent that stuff!" And/or Holmes wasn't going after the elite class, so they passed.

Damn... that didn't even take a lot of tin foil to come up with and half-way consider.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Preempting Sexual Harassment In the Workplace?

X86Daddy I'm much more impressed with this comment thread (1127 comments)

I'm much more impressed with this comment thread than with the female body armor thread yesterday... Cheers

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Preempting Sexual Harassment In the Workplace?

X86Daddy Mod this up too! (1127 comments)

If the original question had anyone seriously thinking about how appropriate it was, this rewording should make it crystal clear as to how stupid the proposal is. People need to grow the hell up or they just don't get to work in a profession. End of story.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Preempting Sexual Harassment In the Workplace?

X86Daddy Mod that up (1127 comments)

Other than all the "don't play games, talk to a lawyer" bits of advice, this is the best thing in the thread.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Open Source Employee Vacation-Day Tracking Software?

X86Daddy This application (108 comments)

It's funny... Every company I've worked for has built this application over and over... different languages, different platforms to integrate with different generations of desktop / networked calendaring, etc... and even different versions for different departments when there's variation allowed on a per-manager basis. It seems like it's always a bespoke, in-house sorta thing. It's also usually treated as the "get started" application when switching technology platforms... "If we can figure out how to build a vacation tracker, we can then handle migrating a bunch of other workflow apps."

Due to all the situational dependencies, you can't just find the perfect OSS one. Follow up your question with what you use for email, calendaring, and what kind of server tech you are good with deploying and you might find suitable answers... i.e. a LAMP stack based tool that ties to Google Calendar perfectly ain't gonna help an all-Microsoft shop much.

more than 2 years ago
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US Army Developing Armor Tailored For Females

X86Daddy Modular Design? (310 comments)

Given that there is so much variety in body shape, torso shape, etc... across everyone, and not just 2 shapes of male & female, why isn't there a more modular approach towards getting every soldier armor perfectly adapted to their bodies? Given what the US spends on military in general, citing budget reasons is an enormous pile of BS.

And I must vent: Seriously? Must the mental children turn into drooling idiots whenever the topic of a female's body differences comes up? Way to represent! You know those shitty stereotypes that say you're not going to score because you're awkward and linking nerdity with disastrous gender relations? Those of you being so clever with your jokes are perpetuating that. You are responsible for your miserable relationships or lack thereof. People are people; just fucking treat them like that, and you might find best friends, life consorts, employees, employers, etc... It's as stupid as racism, all the gushing about a physical attribute to the exclusion of who the person is. Not every single bawdy/body joke represents such problems, but when it invariably becomes half of the damn highly rated posts on every story like this, you tarnish the word "nerd" and send us all back to the 1970s a bit more.

more than 2 years ago
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Microsoft Apologizes For Inserting Naughty Phrase Into Linux Kernel

X86Daddy Even more interesting... (897 comments)

I find it more interesting that 10-year-olds are committing code to the Linux kernel.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Old Dogs vs. New Technology?

X86Daddy Age is media perpetuated myth factor in this field (515 comments)

I've worked with tons of people in my IT career (roughly 15 years now, mostly with a Fortune 100). The cross-section of "elite" people who had the knack and enthusiasm for tech wizardry and learning were all ages, all genders, all races, etc... and pretty even distribution at that. Those who couldn't handle tech and learning well were also evenly distributed. Trying to correlate various factors and put people in categorical boxes is not only a nasty, frowned-upon behavior, but it leads to fewer friends, fewer opportunities, and greater inaccuracy in all things. I like to appreciate or dislike people for exactly who they are. :-)

Check your demeanor in how you deliver answers and solutions... everyone has their own sense of pride and don't like to hear condescension... negative reactions to your solutions may really be negative reactions to smugness. Also, "new" is not always "better." If something new actually sucks, commiserate with your coworkers about how MS Ribbon is Fischer Price crap, etc... and it will help build rapport. You'll be seen less as the new-stuff-addict and more as truly a source of tech-wisdom.

If you're truly the tech badass in your team, that means you can participate in sharing and mutual bettering with the office-politics-badass and the communication-badass and the customer-relations-badass, etc... If you're missing/wanting to get into great discussions and mutual knowledge sharing on cutting edge stuff, check out your local 2600, Makers, Hackerspace, programming language user groups, etc...

more than 2 years ago
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Ron Paul's New Primary Goal Is "Internet Freedom"

X86Daddy Re:So what? (948 comments)

24.4% of eligible voters voted for W. 24.7% of eligible voters voted for Gore. 49% of eligible voters did not bother show up at the polls. Irrespective of your political leanings, it's more true to say that a quarter of you are idiots and half of you are dangerously apathetic.

Perhaps half of us are simply disenfranchised. When the gamers have gamed the system to disallow any new players and to preclude the kind of change half of us care about, we feel nothing but despair and disgust with the presented 2 options, every bloody time.

more than 2 years ago
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Transplant Surgeon Called Dibs On Steve Jobs' Home

X86Daddy I live 3 blocks away (291 comments)

My house is three blocks away and I never knew until recently that he lived in this neighborhood. This is arguably the best neighborhood in Memphis (walkability, diversity, mix of biz/res is awesome), but in the 2007-2008 time period, prices dropped pretty hard, and continued downward a bit. 1.3 million to 850k is quite reasonable for what was happening then. The fact that he got back his purchase price, given what was going on, is the impressive bit. No one was getting a price increase during this timeframe. A lot of losses were happening instead.

Thankfully, the area is having a nice resurgence, with previously closed/shaby businesses re-opening as really nice things, and our prices are going back up finally.

more than 2 years ago
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Primary School Girl Told To Stop Photographing and Blogging School Meals

X86Daddy Re:U turn (472 comments)

Oh yeah... I attended a GA high school (obedience school) and was really impressed with what they emphasized. The most important geometry to know was skirt length to knee distance, etc...

more than 2 years ago
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Where's HAL 9000?

X86Daddy Sooner than you think... (269 comments)

Memristors. Google the word. I did not expect to see real AI in my lifetime before that announcement, and now I do. Memristors are close enough to neurons that you can run something like a brain on a chip, whereas before, all neural nets were simulated and therefore took a lot of computing power just to do small things like machine vision (face recognition, etc...).

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

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Selling a DeLorean for Bitcoin; transaction advice?

X86Daddy X86Daddy writes  |  about a year and a half ago

X86Daddy (446356) writes "I'm selling my DeLorean for Bitcoins. Any advice for conducting large, live transactions like this? I've read about the Porsche sale from April, and my current plan is to simply use the Android Bitcoin app to ask for payment, and take the buyer to lunch while waiting for 6 confirmations, at which point I sign over the title. Anyone have other ideas or considerations for something like this?"

Journals

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Less expensive source of Bawls?

X86Daddy X86Daddy writes  |  about 12 years ago

Anyone know a source to buy cases of Bawls Guarana that's cheaper than Thinkgeek?

I went to PhreakNIC this last weekend where they were selling cases for $36, and now that I look at Thinkgeek, with $27 cases + $13 shipping, I realize it wasn't a terrible price. :-( And after having a couple bottles there, I remembered how good the stuff is.

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Yo

X86Daddy X86Daddy writes  |  more than 12 years ago

This is my journal... nothing special to see here, but if you want to contact me or whatever, you can reply to this.... I may even put something interesting here one day!

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